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Free Minds & Free Markets

How Liberals Became the New Book Banners

The First Amendment is under fire from the progressive left.

Justice Anthony Kennedy: "Well, suppose it were an advocacy organization that had a book. Your position is that under the Constitution . . . the book itself could be prohibited."

Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm Stewart: "If the book contained the functional equivalent of express advocacy."—Exchange during oral arguments over Citizens United, 2009

"A campaign document in the form of a book can be banned."— Campaign finance advocate Fred Wertheimer, of Democracy21

Before last week’s Banned Book Week recedes much farther in the rearview mirror, let’s pause for a moment to note this curious fact: Some of those who oppose censorship also support it.

For thoughtful people, Banned Books Week is tennis with the net down. The targets are easy and mostly deserve the hits they take: the prudes who object to the potty humor of Captain Underpants. The narrow-minded scolds who can’t see past the racial language in To Kill a Mockingbird to its broader values. The zealots who think harmless Harry Potter leads to Satanism.

Most intelligent people laugh at such folk. They think, or at least claim to think, that efforts to restrict access to books is so flatly wrong it’s not even worth discussing. In a contest pitting what the American Library Association calls “the value of free and open access to information” against any other values, the former wins every time. Almost.

For obvious reasons, the media give Banned Books Week lots of attention. The New York Times has run countless features on it, from “Ways to Celebrate Banned Books Week” and “What Are You Doing for Banned Books Week?” to a 2009 editorial appreciation of the ALA’s Judith Krug, who established Banned Books Week back in the ’80s, “during one of the nation’s periodic censorship epidemics.” On The Huffington Post last week, visitors could read “10 Gorgeous Quotes From Banned Books” and “Every Week is Banned Book Week for Chicanos” and an infographic regarding “Banned Books by the Numbers.” It was the same at CNN, the Los Angeles Times and so on.

There’s a certain smugness about all of this—an aroma of self-congratulation from those secure in the knowledge that they are on the side of the angels. That aroma mixes poorly with the sulfurous fumes belched out in the continuing war over campaign finance law.

Ever since the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling in Citizens United, liberals have railed against the decision, which they say “opened the floodgates” to unlimited corporate spending on elections. President Obama claimed the decision “strikes at democracy itself.” Others called it “reckless,” “dangerous,” “ludicrous,” “radical,” “absurd” and so on. Efforts to reverse the decision culminated last month in a Senate vote on a constitutional amendment, sponsored by 48 Democrats.

There’s just one thing missing from all the outrage over the Citizens United ruling: the facts.

The question before the court in that case was whether the government had the power, as laid out in the McCain-Feingold law, to prohibit the distribution of a movie about Hillary Clinton in the 30 days before a federal primary election because it was, ostensibly, an “electioneering communication”—one that advocated for or against electing a political candidate, or that amounted to the functional equivalent of same—that had been produced by a (nonprofit) corporation.

That raised another quite obvious question: If the government could forbid distribution of a movie, then could it also forbid distribution of a book? The government’s lawyer gave the only logically consistent answer possible: yes. The Supreme Court wisely said: No, the government cannot ban books—nor can it ban movies, or TV ads, or billboards, or other forms of independent communication. No matter who produces them, and no matter when.

This offends progressives because, as Minnesota Sen. Al Franken said recently, it “gives corporate special interests the ability to spend unlimited amounts of money in our elections.” Franken was one of the sponsors of the Senate amendment, which lost by a narrow vote. Also standing behind the measure was The New York Times, which—like the Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post, and good liberals everywhere—has fulminated against Citizens United. During one of the nation’s periodic censorship epidemics, you might say.

Because those who seek to roll back Citizens United want precisely what the American Library Association objects to: They want to limit the free flow of information. They have reasons for this, which they think are good ones: ensuring a level playing field. Preventing big money from drowning out smaller voices. Stopping corporate interests from influencing politicians.

Well, those who want to restrict access to Captain Underpants and To Kill a Mockingbird have their reasons, too, which they also think pretty highly of. Liberals cannot open the door to censorship for reasons they consider good without also opening the door for reasons they consider not-so-good. Once they admit some books might be banned for some reasons, then the relevant question ceases to be whether we should ever ban books at all and devolves to a lesser one: which reasons qualify as good enough.

The hard truth is that those who support a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United are book banners, at least in principle. And once you have conceded the principle on book-banning, you have conceded the entire issue.

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  • Pro Libertate||

    You know, it's really high time we stop calling statist authoritarian fucks liberal. There's virtual nothing liberal about them. They clearly want a dictatorship and unlimited government.

  • Hugh Akston||

    But they are very liberal about spending other peoples' money.

  • Free Society||

    We are the liberals and we're even more liberal than the classical variety. The people commonly referred to as liberals in the US are the antithesis of liberality.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I'm not even talking about the usual gripe that we, not them, are the liberals from the international and historical perspective. I mean that, as supposed heirs (more twisted step-children) of liberalism, they should be in some way arguably part of the liberal tradition. But they aren't.

  • Free Society||

    I mean that, as supposed heirs (more twisted step-children) of liberalism, they should be in some way arguably part of the liberal tradition. But they aren't.

    Well your right. But modern American liberals are in fact directly descended from liberalism just not how they think they are.

    Basically since before the Progressive Era, there was a marriage between liberalism and fascism mostly as a response to communism, that basically produced the ideological framework for the likes of Woodrow Wilson and FDR. Progressives and modern American liberals have dad's name and inheritance but almost all of mom's identifying features.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Mom was a fascist?

  • Free Society||

    I suppose so. Or dad took mom's name, but that's just some new age hippie shit so the analogy stands.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Yes, there was a marriage between Progressivism and Fascism, and yes it was in reaction to Communism ... But not in the way you seem to imply. Communism and Fascism are not substantially different, and the marriage took place because Communism made Progressives cream their shorts.

  • Free Society||

    I never said they were the same so...

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    They call themselves "progressives" these days. It is safe to use "liberal" again in the right environment.

    Both ends of the political spectrum are fucked up.

  • Free Society||

    Your quaint little "political spectrum" measuring stick is fucked up. It's designed to help you not think any harder than would be required of a "moderate".

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Why? Because I refuse to let either side own the word "liberal"?

    Rush (King of the Rednecks) Limbaugh hates liberals and that includes people like FA Hayek (who hated conservatives like him).

  • WTF||

    Don't lock eyes with 'em, don't do it. Puts 'em on edge. They might go into berzerker mode; come at you like a whirling dervish, all fists and elbows. You might be screaming "No, no, no" and all they hear is "Who wants cake?" Let me tell you something: They all do. They all want cake.

  • Free Society||

    The single axis 'political spectrum' is ridiculously oversimplified. It's simply a relic of the church of centrism, held up high as a proselytizing tool to convert public school children to the faith of non-principles.

    Why? Because I refuse to let either side own the word "liberal"?

    The word 'liberal' has a real meaning that falls a mile short of describing the group claiming it as a label describing it's contents. It's disingenuous. Whoever may own the word liberal, it's definitely not ones currently in possession.

    Rush (King of the Rednecks) Limbaugh hates liberals and that includes people like FA Hayek (who hated conservatives like him).

    so?

  • Free Society||

    Rush (King of the Rednecks) Limbaugh hates liberals and that includes people like FA Hayek (who hated conservatives like him).

    Right after I tell him how the political spectrum he references is oversimplified, he follows that up with telling me how Rush Limbaugh talks shit about FA Hayek. As if that invalidates the libertarian inheritance of classical liberalism. It's just added irony that he is only equipped to argue against two-dimensional groups that fits onto his little chart.

  • AGoyAndHisBLog||

    The single axis is a requirement for comprehensibility (remember whom we're trying to educate here).

    The problem is with how this axis been (ab)used.

    Since Mussolini's day - specifically, with the publication and dissemination of his Fascist Doctrine - the arbitrary and inaccurate political spectrum has placed radical, populist collectivism on the far left and "conservative", nationalist authoritarianism on the right.

    The problem with this - and the reason this axis has done more to obfuscate political discussion than to facilitate it - is that in the context Mussolini was working, BOTH of the opposed ideological positions he was discussing were actually competing paths to socialism, which he never abandoned as a core principle of social organization. Mussolini rejected the radical, populist "socialism" of the "left" of his day, as co-opted by the communists, in the same way that many ostensibly classical liberals have rejected "liberalism" of our day, as co-opted by the cultural marxists and so-called "progressives".

    Here in America, the marxists' efforts to distance their socialism from that of Hitler's and Mussolini's emphasized this "left"/"right" dichotomy to that end. Naturally, in their distorted, nonsensical spectrum, "right-wing" ideology is conflated with "fascism". The corollary to that broken paradigm is that there's no such thing as anarchy, i.e., it can't be found at any point between the totalitarianism of fascism and that of communism.

  • AGoyAndHisBLog||

    The only spectrum that makes any sense in the context of the end result of political ideology (i.e., how it impacts the average person) is one with Totalitarianism at one end (e.g., the left, for historical reasons) and Anarchy at the other (on the right, by process of elimination).

    This provides a metric to measure the difference between the Omnipotent State (left) and Nonexistent State (right).

    Using this metric not only provides for the existence of anarchy, but libertarianism as well, which ALSO can not exist anywhere on the distorted, deliberately confusing spectrum that has endpoints at Communism and Fascism, respectively.

    As for terms like "liberal", "conservative", etc., the problem with them is... "compared to what?" They have no intrinsic meaning in the context of politics (like the terms "sustainability", "diversity", "tolerance" and all the other words co-opted by the left and converted to memes) and, therefore, often obfuscate more than they facilitate.

    All part of Stalin-era psyops, which leverages humanity's genetic predisposition toward tribal affiliation, and uses that to drive people toward the populist, radical ideology.

  • Free Society||

    The only spectrum that makes any sense in the context of the end result of political ideology [...] is one with Totalitarianism at one end [...] and Anarchy at the other [...].

    Couldn't agree more. I made a similar point elsewhere in this thread. I don't have a problem with a single axis per se. As you mention, the only logical way to use a single axis diagram for political ideologies is to evaluate based on one factor; the use of force, the exercise of authority, the amount of concentrated perhaps et cetera. If we were to draw a spectrum between fascism and communism, it would represent a tiny sliver of the left-most side of the actual (logically valid) political spectrum with anarchy to the right-most.

    All part of Stalin-era psyops, which leverages humanity's genetic predisposition toward tribal affiliation, and uses that to drive people toward the populist, radical ideology.

    I don't think radical is necessarily a bad thing. Libertarianism is radical as compared to the predominating beliefs in society. "Centrism" is what these spectrums are designed to promote. Even under Joseph Stalin there was a spectrum of acceptable political beliefs, narrow as it was, it was there. Under Stalin the favored centrists within Bolshevism was somewhere between Lenin and Stalin, and left no room for even most of the other Bolshevist factions like Trotsky and the like.

  • AGoyAndHisBLog||

    "If we were to draw a spectrum between fascism and communism..."

    Precisely! And, unfortunately, this is the paradigm most commonly referenced in academia and many other venues where these things are discussed. The underlying constant, as a result, is that "you can have whatever system you want... as long as it's some flavor of Socialism".

    Agreed - I don't think radical is necessarily a bad thing in and of itself. As with most things... it depends.

    The problem that arises in contemporary ideological discussion is that radicalism is too often associated with and/or employed along with marxism.

    Additional thoughts on all this here, FWIW: http://bit.ly/1gyngvD

  • Free Society||

    The problem that arises in contemporary ideological discussion is that radicalism is too often associated with and/or employed along with marxism.

    Marxism really is mainstream as long as it's described using non-marxist rhetoric. And when you think about it, Marxism is like an Oort Cloud of bad ideas and fallacies that coming careening into the mainstream every few years until it's obliterated in spectacular display of human misery, as it strays too close to the center and becomes implemented policy.

  • Free Society||

    Additional thoughts on all this here, FWIW: http://bit.ly/1gyngvD

    Well written blog. I think you should explore statelessness/anarcho-capitalism/voluntaryism or whatever you want to call it. That is if feuding libertarians are something you'd like to see in your comments section. Also because it's a genuinely thought-provoking subject for the open-minded.

  • AGoyAndHisBLog||

    Thank you.

    I've seen such discussions, actually, and I agree.

    If I'm allowed to dream, then having finally realized when and how thoroughly our own Constitution and Republic were corrupted, rather than try to promote one system, I'd prefer to take the Free Marketplace of Ideas approach, i.e., by dismantling the current federal monolith and returning to a sovereign-State system of governance. If a State wants to try marxism, let them - the others will see how well it 'works'. Same with other systems of social organization. With an amplified degree of accountability (i.e., no federal redistribution of wealth to coddle the stupid ideas), the viable systems will make themselves known - which, I believe, is what the Founders intended.

    http://bit.ly/1p6qQml

  • Knarf Yenrab!||

    Dave's claim is trivially false, which a five-second Googling would've revealed to him had he decency enough to read about something before opining about it.

    Limbaugh loves Hayek and understands that Hayek's distinction of continental liberal/conservative doesn't coincide with the standard American one, which is a pretty common view among Kirkian or WFB-style conservatives. The problem with "conservatives" isn't that they don't have access to or in many ways agree with classical liberal/libertarian thought--the problem is that they tacitly agreed to be the Slightly Less Collectivist Party sixty years ago by choosing Eisenhower over Taft and haven't had much of a soul since.

    So the Limbaughs and Millers of the world will say lovely things about Hayek or Ayn Rand right up until November, at which point it becomes time to play the Lesser of Two Evils game.

  • John Titor (Formerly Jensen)||

    Because your concept of 'sides' is based on a two hundred year old obsolete notion of where people sat in the French National Assembly?

  • HolgerDanske||

    I think Free Society might have meant that dividing the political spectrum into a left-right paradigm is too simplistic?

    It allows politicians on either end of that particular spectrum to get away with things, because some of their other leanings have no-where to rest on it.

  • Suicidy||

    They need to be the antithesis of alive.

  • CatoTheElder||

    This shit's been going on for a long time. Here's Orwell:

    The words democracy, socialism, freedom, patriotic, realistic, justice have each of them several different meanings which cannot be reconciled with one another. In the case of a word like democracy, not only is there no agreed definition, but the attempt to make one is resisted from all sides. It is almost universally felt that when we call a country democratic we are praising it: consequently the defenders of every kind of regime claim that it is a democracy, and fear that they might have to stop using that word if it were tied down to any one meaning. Words of this kind are often used in a consciously dishonest way. That is, the person who uses them has his own private definition, but allows his hearer to think he means something quite different. Statements like Marshal Pétain was a true patriot, The Soviet press is the freest in the world, The Catholic Church is opposed to persecution, are almost always made with intent to deceive. Other words used in variable meanings, in most cases more or less dishonestly, are: class, totalitarian, science, progressive, reactionary, bourgeois, equality.

    Liberal and conservative are certainly in this group of words. Now the likes of Bill Maher and Glen Beck call themselves libertarian, I suppose libertarian belongs there as well, though around these parts libertarian has a fairly definite meaning.

  • CatoTheElder||

    When politicians and pundits use these words, their intent is to deceive, to obfuscate, or to confuse. Why, for example, did the media select the color red to signify Republicans and blue to signify Democrats? Unless the entirety of the media is historically ignorant, the intent had to be to confuse.

  • The Last American Hero||

    Actually the Red/Blue thing would flip every presidential cycle. But in the hotly contested 2000 and its aftermath, there was so much talk about Red States and Blue States that they have now assigned the teams colors to avoid confusion. That today's congressional Dems, many of whom are borderline commies, aren't called Reds, is amusing.

  • Suicidy||

    That they are not also called federal inmates is profoundly disturbing.

  • Paul.||

    I think it's pretty well established that we refer to them as progressives.

  • MegaloMonocle||

    Give it up, Pro Lib. The word "liberal" has been hopelessly corrupted.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I'm not trying to reclaim it, only trying to get at least our fellow-travelers to stop using it in connection with fascists.

  • Spyrius Droid||

    "A. Barton Hinkle is senior editorial writer and a columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch."

    Maybe he's not really aware of the distinction.

  • ant1sthenes||

    We could call them "social liberals", since putting "social" in front of something means "shitty", "bullshit", or "anti-", depending on the context. If it took off, it could nudge libertarians to stop calling themselves socially liberal and economically conservative, and just call themselves liberal.

    To wit:
    Social justice
    Social media
    Social security
    Socialism

  • Suicidy||

    I just call them traitors, or traitorkind.

  • ||

    You're correct? How about "leftist"? It's already in somewhat common usage, and it sounds appropriately sinister to my ears.

  • ||

    Strike that first ?. It's so rare that Pro Glib says something that's not as retarded as he is that I forgot how to punctuate.

  • Pro Libertate||

    What is this, act like Episiarch Day? Fine. You're an asshole, fetch me Alison Brie and a pizza made on cardboard with foie gras rendered from a goose killed by LSD.

  • ||

    Shut up, jerk. When I lived in New York City I ignored all the laws all the time because I'm a badass. What are you, poor? Fuck you, bring me cocaine.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Seahawks are the best team ever, ass-fuck.

  • ||

    I'll see your Seahawks and raise you the '58 Colts.

  • C. Anacreon||

    I think it would be pretty scary what a current NFL team would do to the 220-pound linemen of the 58 Colts.

  • Dammit, not again||

    I was never enthusiastic about time-travel before this comment.

  • CatoTheElder||

    The problem with "leftist" is that leftist originally described the political faction that sat on the left side of the French assembly. Bastiat and the other French liberals were on that side.

  • Juice||

    Just call them illiberals. It's pithy.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    Def not Liberals. Call them Progressives, Ur Fascists, etc.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    I remember when the Fairness Doctrine was the scary boogeyman of the month.

    This stupidity will pass as well.

  • Free Society||

    It's always the proggy camp coming down against free speech and just about every other one of our liberties whose protections they'd prefer to be selectively enforced.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Look, I was outraged by the Meese Commission and local porn and stripper bans the right favor when they are in power.

    CU has created a prog blindspot for sure. But both sides like to censor.

  • ||

    Not always, FS. Remember the recent kerfuffle when a catholic priest claimed that speech which he didn't like was an infringement of his rights and those of all other catholics?

  • robc||

    You implying a catholic priest cant also be a proggy? Venn says you are wrong.

  • Free Society||

    Not always, FS. Remember the recent kerfuffle when a catholic priest claimed that speech which he didn't like was an infringement of his rights and those of all other catholics?

    The Pope, the Vicar of the Catholic pantheon of gods, is a proggy if not something worse.

    I didn't say there aren't individual exceptions. But as an ideology, the side constantly promoting things like the trigger warnings, fairness doctrines or the restriction of political contributions (except from unions and pro-left groups of course) is the pro-state left. The right, excluding libertarians, has some history in promoting censorship, mostly on "decency" grounds, but nothing like the progressives and of course doesn't even compare to the socialists and communists.

  • Juice||

    No matter what people who like the right/left paradigm will tell you, libertarians aren't on the right.

  • Free Society||

    If there were a workable left-right paradigm it would be anarchy on the right and totalitarianism/authoritarianism to the left. But that's not what I'm doing here.

    But I only use the word 'left' to describe the array of groups that bitch whenever you call them a socialist or progressive or 'liberal' or whatever. Short of guessing whichever semantic label the socialist prefers to be titled, "left" is an widely accepted short-hand for all that socialist dumbfuckery.

  • John||

    The fairness doctrine was real and it was an enormous restriction on speech. It was only after it was killed that talk radio developed.

    You are and everyone like you are fascists. We all know that. Stop pretending that the rest of us are as stupid as you are. We are not.

  • tarran||

    It's not fascist, John!!!!!

    As a precondition to being fascist, it has to be sentient! Are cockroaches fascists? Can a worm be a reactionary? Does a guppy comprehend abstract concepts like law and custom?

    It excretes fascist comments as an mindless evolutionary adaptation because that excrement attracts the comments of others which is what it feeds on. It's like a cockroach that has trained humans to dump sugar wherever and whenever it poops.

  • JWW||

    I see the explosion of talk radio after the fairness doctrine's demise as absolute proof of how bad "well intentioned" regulations can be.

    In hindsight is completely obvious now how evil the fairness doctrine was. But before it went down, people thought is was actually an acceptable rule.

    Of course this does concretely mean that the people who want it back are useless statist sycophants.

  • AustinRoth||

    You expect logical consistency from the Left? Really?

    Next you will be shocked to find out that the press covers Republicans more harshly than Democrats.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Funny, I don't often here the Lamestream Media talk about Citizens United. And certainly never the nightly news that wingnuts like to criticize.

    Democracy 21? Who the fuck are they?

  • Certified Public Asskicker||

    You have excellent selective hearing.

  • John||

    You don't hear it because you are retarded and the box you live in doesn't get cable. Watch more TV than 10 minutes of MSNBC before they kick out of Best Buy and you would know more.

  • Free Society||

    ha

  • CatoTheElder||

    lol

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Progressives have always banned books (who do you think was doing the "banning in Boston"?) as the control of information is the basis for societal engineering. Read up on Comstock and his New York Society for the Suppression of Vice. Read up on who supported their efforts. Read broadly and widely, for soon you might not have the opportunity to do so.

  • Marshall Gill||

    Thomas Sowell points out how the term "progressive" is meant to imply that those opposed to it oppose "progress". The most ironic part being that self-identified "progressives" almost universally look backwards.

    Being in favor of the exact same kind of social engineering that has failed so spectacularly in the past can not be correctly termed "progressive". They are actually "regressive".

  • ant1sthenes||

    Just call them Platonist and be done with it.

  • craiginmass||

    "The most ironic part being that self-identified "progressives" almost universally look backwards.''

    Uh, that's the very definition of Conservative! You should look it up sometime.

    "conservatism, political doctrine that emphasizes the value of traditional institutions and practices.

    Conservatism is a preference for the historically inherited rather than the abstract and ideal"

    On the other hand:

    " liberalism, which is a modernizing, antitraditionalist movement dedicated to correcting the evils and abuses resulting from the misuse of social and political power."

    So, which are you?

  • JPyrate||

    headinass. Why don't you just go back to beating your wage slaves.

  • Samshile||

    " political doctrine that emphasizes the value of traditional institutions and practices."
    Conserving the Constitution!
    Conserving Liberty!
    Not for liberating Statism.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    So, progressives want to ban books and control what we do in our bedrooms (witness the California "affirmative consent" law). Maybe someone can remind me again how its the religious right that's just a hairs breadth away of taking away all of our social freedom?

  • Free Society||

    "Doctor there's something in my vagina and I can't get it out. It keeps shouting incoherently about social justice and patriarchy, make it stop!"

  • SusanM||

    Top Ten Indicators Your Employer Has Changed To Obamacare Health Plan (according to David Letterman)

    (10) Your annual breast exam is done at Hooters

    (9) Directions to your doctor’s office include “Take a left when you enter the trailer park”

    (8) The tongue depressors taste faintly of fudgesicles

    (7) The only proctologist in the plan is “Gus” from Roto-Rooter

    (6) The only item listed under Preventive Care Coverage is “an apple a day”

    (5) Your primary care physician is wearing the pants you gave to Goodwill last month

    (4) The statement… “The patient is responsible for 200% of out-of-network charges”…is not a typographical error

    (3) The only expense covered 100% is…”Embalming”

    (2) Your Prozac comes in different colors with little M’s on them

    (1) You ask for Viagra and they give you a Popsicle stick and duct tape.

    http://thefinancialphysician.c.....letterman/

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    That is a great Top Ten. Conservatives hate Letterman but he does skewer both sides.

  • UnCivilServant||

    I hate Letterman because there's a dearth of humor in his act. He bored the crap out of me. Though I will admit that "Will it Float" is more scientific than climate models because it is reproducable and verifiable.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I loved Letterman back in the 80s, but it's hard to maintain that edge over time.

  • Mrs. Premise||

    He used to be really funny, but now he is just a grouchy old man who never leaves his desk.
    That is the funniest top ten I've seen in a while, though. Do they still do Will it Float?

  • Pro Libertate||

    Haven't watched it in ages. I'm more in the Larry "Bud" Melman and The Guy Under the Seats era.

  • Kure'i||

    Yeah, back when he was edgy for the network and still funny.

  • MOFO.||

    Most progressives, or leftists, or whatever they are calling themselves today dont even know what Citizens United was actually about. Ask them to describe it and the most common answer is that it was about foreign corporations giving money to politicians.

  • John||

    Most rank and file leftists are pig ignorant and easily lead. The leftist leaders, while still ignorant, have a feral intelligence and understand perfectly what Citizens' United is about and how it prevents them from criminalizing their opponents.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    How does all this square with "Madam Secretary"? Blatant campaigning by CBS for Hillary.

    So campaigning (by a very large corporation) for Hillary is ok but campaigning against is not ok?

    I think we have another example of Principals vs Principles that define Progressivism.

  • Walter Peck||

    That's one of the reason the progs love this. They know most in the media agree with their ideology. They will get tons of free propaganda that escapes the regulations they want.

  • Samshile||

    Leftist followers are:"swallowers"

  • PBR Streetgang||

    ^^THIS. A hundred times THIS!

  • CatoTheElder||

    ^^^^ Squared

  • Suicidy||

    Most of the must hysterically bleat buzzwords like: Corporations! The Christian right! And Koch brothers!

    Mostly because they are so Goddamn stupid.

  • Suicidy||

    meant to say 'Most of them just......'.

  • Juice||

    Money isn't speech! Corporations aren't people! Therefore we are allowed to restrict speech by restricting money and we're allowed to restrict people by restricting corporations!

  • craiginmass||

    "Corporations! The Christian right! And Koch brothers!"

    Yeah, none of those things exist. The Kochs clean up the environment and the Christian Right has not been responsible for forcing religion deeper into our government.....

    yes, we are making all of this up. Especially the parts about The Family, the club consisting of many of the top lawmakers and power brokers who want Jesus to run the USA and World...and are anti-democracy. Yep - making it all up. Ensign didn't belong to that. He just stayed there. Yep. Keep telling yourself all this crap.

  • JPyrate||

    Turd.Burglar.

  • John||

    http://www.nationaljournal.com.....e-20140930

    FCC may ban the saying of the word "Redskin" on broadcast TV. Progs are all about free speech I tell you.

    I almost hope they do it since that might actually be a bridge too far and causes people to turn on these assholes. The Redskins name issue is something that is both well known by everyone and so idiotic that even the prog media and mass culture machine can't convince people.

  • Tony||

    While I'm against censorship by the FCC, if we must have "decency" rules, the word redskin should be treated the same as the words nigger or chink. Serious news outlets have already stopped using it. It's a racist term.

    Glad to see your soulless partisanship on display once again though. What other bad things do you want to happen to the country so that your team scores points?

  • Free Society||

    Who cares if someone says nigger? It's an arrangement of phonetic sounds that does no damage. Call a particular person a nigger and then that person may have reason to be offended, but not necessarily anymore so than if I call him/her a fatfuck or asshole or whatever. Some words carry more negative connotation than others but it's not as though the sky opens up and lightening strikes every time someone says the word. If racist ideas are truly bad, and I think so, then they will fail on their own lack of merit. Yet another thing we don't need a state bureaucracy to manage.

  • Tony||

    Who cares if someone says nigger? It's an arrangement of phonetic sounds that does no damage.

    Really? So more broadly speaking you're saying that speech can never do harm, and thus can never do good, because arrangements of phonetic sounds have no effect on people or the environment. If speech is useful and even powerful, then it must sometimes also be harmful. If it is impotent, then why protect it at all? Do you suppose black children being called nigger by their teacher are not harmed in any way?

    But I agree that government shouldn't be the one policing words, and I said that. I don't agree that the negative effects of racism will go away because it's bad. Everyone has to consider it bad first, and clearly not everyone does.

  • Free Society||

    Really? So more broadly speaking you're saying that speech can never do harm, and thus can never do good, because arrangements of phonetic sounds have no effect on people or the environment.

    Does that word give you cancer? Does it make you hair fall out? Whether or not someone is offended

    If speech is useful and even powerful, then it must sometimes also be harmful. If it is impotent, then why protect it at all?

    The power of speech is the ideas conveyed. Like you for example, you offer plenty of speech but none of it applicable to reality.

    Do you suppose black children being called nigger by their teacher are not harmed in any way?

    Teachers would offer a similar level of "harm" when they call their students 'little shits' or 'bastards'.

    I don't agree that the negative effects of racism will go away because it's bad. Everyone has to consider it bad first, and clearly not everyone does.

    Bad ideas yield to good ideas in the absence of political coercion and lies. I didn't say that bad things magically go away. But nonetheless, most people realize the invalidity of 19th century eugenics by now. No thanks to the states, political institutions and tax dollars that prolonged it's relevance.

  • Tony||

    The power of speech is the ideas conveyed.

    But the word "nigger" is idea-free? Is it? Or might it convey quite a volume of ideas for its brevity?

    Teachers would offer a similar level of "harm" when they call their students 'little shits' or 'bastards'.

    Not the same kind of harm at all. Singling out racial minorities for invective harms in a more acute and and consequential way than calling all children generically "bastards." Surely you see that? Not that teachers should do either--but apparently you think calling children names causes no harm to them?

    No thanks to the states, political institutions and tax dollars that prolonged it's relevance.

    Since the state and political institutions aren't going away, it might pay to ensure that they are more accountable to the people who are clamoring to out-liberalize it on such issues.

  • Ballz||

    -tony
    cigar smoker!
    pillow biter!
    :)

  • Tony||

    "I'm a member of every privileged class there is, and I don't think slurs can hurt. And being in such a fortunate position, I should know."

  • Ballz||

    It can't be slur if I don't use banned words.
    Right?

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    Shut the fuck up nigger faggot.

  • Suicidy||

    You are only against censorship that goes against your evil leftism. You understand nothing.

  • Tony||

    How about not telling me what I believe?

  • JPyrate||

    Turd.Burglar.

  • Samshile||

    It is not racist. It is not by most polls and most Indians. Only lame followers of the latest ignorant Victicrat trend think you are right. In addition, it is is an honorable term. Lastly, it is none of your business.

  • Tony||

    And how often do we lose such things? When was the last time a word deemed offensive by, at first, the left, was clawed back and remained OK to the majority?

    And the poll of Native Americans I think you're referring to is 10 years old and relies on self-identification.

  • Kuwanki||

    There are high schools out here on the Navajo res. who call themselves the Redskins, and they do not see the term as racist or even disparaging. But then, they are just Redskins, of course, and not as fucking smart as you, tony. They wouldn't even know that the term Redskins is equal to nigger until you told them, you book-burning nazi cock-sucker. Do you ever stop to wonder why you are universally regarded as this site's pet retarded monkey? i wish you had the brains to realize what a hypocrite you are. i wish you knew what a drag it was to see you.

  • Kure'i||

    +1 Bob Dylan.

  • Drake||

    So the same crowd who burned books in Berlin and controlled the press in the USSR. They think themselves different but never really explain the difference.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Soviet Constitution
    Article 50. In accordance with the interests of the people and in order to strengthen and develop the socialist system, citizens of the USSR are guaranteed freedom of speech, of the press, and of assembly, meetings, street processions and demonstrations.

    Can't be any clearer than this: the Soviet Union explicitly had freedom of the press. It is slanderous to say that American progressives want anything less.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I'm not so sure about Banned Books Week. Don't they define "book banning" to include taking a book out of the curriculum?

    I think "banning" a book, to these folks, means "letting parents rather than credentialed education/library professionals make book-selection decisions."

  • GregMax||

    My curiosity is piqued by the possible future of a country that chooses it's leaders and policy approaches by popular vote when a very high percentage of voters (literal voters) are ignorant and largely respond to irrational bell-ringing manipulation.
    I'd like to be prepared . . .

  • Ballz||

    Ah, you think it matters for whom they vote.
    Left vs Right candidate choice may still be "bell-ringing manipulation". Same single axis presentation.

  • sasob||

    Or two sides of the same counterfeit coin. The two major political parties in this country share power. If it really truly mattered for which one we voted, do you suppose we would even be allowed to vote?

  • Kuwanki||

    Or: "If voting changed anything, it would be illegal."

  • american socialist||

    "There’s a certain smugness about all of this—an aroma of self-congratulation from those secure in the knowledge that they are on the side of the angels. That aroma mixes poorly with the sulfurous fumes belched out in the continuing war over campaign finance law."

    Nice segue, mr. A. Hinkle! You guys at Reason are totally awesome. Uh, is this what they call false equivalence or is it something else? I can't quite put my finger on it.

  • Catatafish||

    What is false about comparing banning one form of communication and not banning another, with no other rationale behind the differing treatment than personal preference?

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    I think the term you are looking for is "cognitive dissonance". You can't face the reality that the New-York-Times-Asshole crowd is composed mostly of pro-censorship fascists. So your mind is desperately grasping for ways to deny that reality. Did it work?

  • Suicidy||

    You and your kind are the ultimate hypocrites. In fact, that is the ONLY way your kind of evil can be remotely functional.

  • Lord at War||

    Uh, is this what they call false equivalence or is it something else?

    Say the idiot whose ID emphasizes his nationality and his politics.

    Why didn't you just go with "fascist"?

  • Tak Kak||

    You never hear any mention of the Turner Diaries during banned book week.

  • Catatafish||

    I'll never forget the look on the face of the librarian when 11-year-old me asked where their copy of the "Anarchist's Cookbook" was.

    I suppose I should feel lucky. Today I'd probably be shot by some undercover DHS agent pornsurfing on the computers.

  • Tony||

    The North Korea-level propagandistic discipline you guys have deployed in order to turn money into speech has done more damage to free thought than any campaign finance restrictions liberals have proposed. I hope you're proud of yourselves. Your corporate benefactors certainly are.

  • Free Society||

    Is free thought really a fixture of government policy?

  • FreeRadical||

    How? How do you think like this?

    Do you think there would be more "free thought" if a shitty movie about Hillary Clinton is banned? Not being free to produce and/or enjoy a shitty movie about Hillary increases "free thought"?

    Freedom=bondage, says Tony. There are 5 lights, not 4, says Tony.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    Madam Secretary stupid fuck.

  • FreeRadical||

    Eggs thank you for the correction - I wouldn't want the truth commission paying a visit.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    Aimed at Tony not you.

  • Suicidy||

    You mean as long as YOUR money is protected as speech. As in unions and other groups conducive to getting the left's message out.

    It only damages free thought when it's the Koch brothers, eh comrade?

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    The North Korea-level propagandistic discipline you guys have deployed in order to turn money into speech has done more damage to free thought than any campaign finance restrictions liberals have proposed.

    From the article:

    Justice Anthony Kennedy: "Well, suppose it were an advocacy organization that had a book. Your position is that under the Constitution . . . the book itself could be prohibited."
    Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm Stewart: "If the book contained the functional equivalent of express advocacy."—Exchange during oral arguments over Citizens United, 2009

    "A campaign document in the form of a book can be banned."— Campaign finance advocate Fred Wertheimer, of Democracy21

    Given the above exchange which occurred at the highest court in the land, don't you think the pithy slogan "money isn't speech" rings rather hollow? Doesn't it seem somewhat inappropriate, off-topic, and stupid, considering we're talking about banning speech?

    Chocolate bunnies aren't speech, either. We're not talking about banning chocolate bunnies. We're talking about banning speech. If you're going to be disconnected from the reality of the situation, then you deserve to be ignored.

  • C. Anacreon||

    Here's an amusing excerpt from this week: Our little San Francisco suburb has a small-grass-roots group of people who have found each other hoping to slow "smart growth" stack-and-pack housing mandates in the hilly city's small valley downtown. One of the city council members has gone on "NextDoor" local social media and claims this group is "fake," an "astroturf" organization "funded by the Cato Institute and the Reason Foundation."

    Do any of you know how I can put them in touch with the Reason Foundation? These folks are passing out xeroxed flyers at the farmer's market, clearly they need more funding from their Astroturf overlords.

    Jeez, what a crazy paranoid delusional politician he is, and quite narcisstic to think that anyone who would disagree with him could only be funded by outside conspiracies.

  • bassjoe||

    Parties can be prosecuted and enjoined by the government for publishing computer code because the code has a "non-speech" functionality which the government has an interest in regulating, according to the Supreme Court.

    Taken to the logical conclusion, yes, books can be banned if it falls into that "exception" to the First Amendment.

    I'm not saying this is right. It is, of course, wrong that there is such an exception. Unfortunately, once an "exception" the Constitution is discovered -- no matter how small -- other travesties can be driven right through it.

  • Darth Soros||

    "There’s a certain smugness about all of this—an aroma of self-congratulation from those secure in the knowledge that they are on the side of the angels." That's pretty much the stink that trails after "liberals" wherever they go. (And by "liberals" I mean of course "tax-happy, coercion-addicted, power-tripping State-fellators.") For people whose basic socio-economic philosophy is essentially legalized looting, they certainly think well of themselves.

  • FreeRadical||

    This is what gets under my skin the most when I'm trying to have a civil conversation with "tax-happy, coercion-addicted, power-tripping State-fellators." (that should be the standard definition, I think)

    It's the smug condescension. The utter lack of self examination. The false bemused courtesy. The lack of any actual depth whatsoever.

  • Free Society||

    It's very hard to have a civil conversation with statists about the state. They are statists to begin with because they were taught to tone-down or deactivate their critical thinking altogether. Even a libertarian who reluctantly (and with maybe with some teeth) fellates the state, you'll find them getting very defensive of their leviathan. Often using the same arguments that progressives use when they justify heavy-handed state action.

  • craiginmass||

    You used all the right words in that post. Chairman Koch salutes you.

  • Darth Soros||

    What words would you prefer those of us who actually value liberty to use, criginmass?

  • Darth Soros||

    craiginmass sounds like one of those lockstep party-line regurgitators who pass for smart in today's Left. I call them "the New Tories." Had he been around in 1776, he probably would have written Tom Paine, "You used all the right words in your pamphlet. Haym Solomon salutes you." Because, you know, in his world, the concept of someone believeing his life and property actually belongs to himself is so foreign that no one could REALLY believe in freedom. They must have "false consciousness" and just be echoing their Fat Cat masters.

  • FreeRadical||

    Darth, it must be the word "leviathan" that set off craiginmess's Koch directive detector. Or, "fellates" but I didn't think the Kochs were into that kind of thing.

    The weird thing is, with all the directives I've received from the Kochs, I don't remember having to use those words. They did tell me I had to say "very", "with", and even "even" though.

  • Free Society||

    Craig is very insistent that I'm on the Koch payroll. But I don't think they have my address correct because I have yet to receive these paychecks I've heard so much about.

  • craiginmass||

    "What words would you prefer those of us who actually value liberty to use, criginmass?"

    How about words that actually mean something which are applicable to the real world and that civilized people can discuss the nuances of?

    Hint- these do not include:
    statist
    libertarian
    cunt
    turd
    tax-happy, coercion-addicted, power-tripping State-fellators

    And most others used here.

  • FreeRadical||

    So I can't say "libertarian" when discussing politics or the philosophy of liberty? This is a word for which the nuances cannot be discussed? And I would be uncivilized for using it? And, I guess "statist" is right out.

  • FreeRadical||

    Of course, I should also say that the other words in your list are not suitable for a polite and civil discussion, no. But, they work for the banter that goes on around here.

    And we got ourselves some pretty good banter around these parts.

  • JPyrate||

    headinass. The reason you do not likr those words,(with the exception of Libertarian) is because those words are exact descriptions of you.

  • craiginmass||

    Wait! Is the article talking about truly BANNING books, or is it discussing the promotion or use of a purpose written tome in one particular context?

    MOST Americans are against CU, so either the vast majority of Americans are clueless - and Libertarians, as usual, are the Only Ones With Knowledge.....or this dumb article is just another piece of bait that you a-holes can snap at.....

    Don't you get tired of just sitting around and ranting about how stupid liberals are? This must be especially unrewarding since you know in your heart of hearts that the GOP (yes, the party of the Kochs) is the force behind all the bans of basic stuff like teaching sex education, etc. etc. etc.

    C'mon. You know it. Really. Truly.

    Are you so authoritarian that you truly don't see that many of the sick constructs in this country - from "family values" (I only fuck my wife.....well, at least I don't get caught often doing otherwise) to the "war on drugs" to "hey, kids, don't have sex - abstinence is the key and, in fact, we are going to apply gubment funds to teach it to you, while holding back on basic sex ed".

    C'mon...you are kidding us, right? Is this backwards bizzarro day and I failed to look at the calendar?

  • FreeRadical||

    craiginmess, I do agree with you that "banned books" week sometimes overstates the act of "banning" a book.

    Often, it's the case where a local school board bans the use of a book for certain educational purposes. Just like when a local school board bans or controls sex ed.

    However, yes, this article is about really, truly, banning books. The federal government plainly asserted that it had the power to ban books and movies outright in the period before an election.

    C'mon. You know it. Really. Truly.

  • craiginmass||

    "Often, it's the case where a local school board bans the use of a book for certain educational purposes. Just like when a local school board bans or controls sex ed."

    Let's talk reality. Here is what conservatives do:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09......html?_r=0

    And they make no bones about it. They proudly do it - that is, try to indoctrinate children by either NOT educating them in reality (abstinence, etc.) or teaching them the "conservative" values of NOT PROTESTING...those types of things being bad, bad bad.

  • FreeRadical||

    craig, do you think I am defending conservatives? I don't like their censorious ways any more than I like liberals' censorship. I don't care about your team or the other team.

    But, I guess you missed it... The point of this article is that while most people associate conservatives with censoring, it's liberals now advocating the actual, outright banning of books.

    And all you can do is resort to your ingrained notion of "team" and "others" to say that the dreaded others do it worse.

  • Walter Peck||

    "And all you can do is resort to your ingrained notion of "team" and "others" to say that the dreaded others do it worse."

    That's a pretty standard response, from what I've seen.

  • craiginmass||

    "But, I guess you missed it... The point of this article is that while most people associate conservatives with censoring, it's liberals now advocating the actual, outright banning of books."

    And this is a completely false premise if you truly poll it or measure it.

    It's the standard libertarian fluff of "if we can find something wrong somewhere, then everything stinks".

    Like me saying - if we found a libertarian murderer - that NOW libertarians are murderers.

    Put on your "pretend" hat for a minute. Do you really think if we took a poll of right and left that the left would be more...or less...in favor of banning or rewriting books than the right???

    It's not a mistake that the article may say conservatives are associated with rewriting and banning - expressly because it's TRUE. True then and true now.

    Are there some (many) crazy lefties? yes, of course. I know a number myself who I will not even engage in debate.

  • Kure'i||

    "Put on your "pretend" hat for a minute. Do you really think if we took a poll of right and left that the left would be more...or less...in favor of banning or rewriting books than the right???"

    How about we don't put on a pretend anything, and just look at practically every college in America's "speech code." Do you think those were inspired and written by righties?

    Or how about we throw away the pretend hat, and look at the fact that it was the Democrats in the United States Senate who tried to change the Constitution to restrict speech?

    Or how about all the campaigns to stop using certain words over the past 10 years -- was that the right behind those? Is the political right applying the pressure against saying -- god forbid! -- "Redskins?"

    Was it the right discussing the necessity of a new Fairness Doctrine?

    When was the last time that right-wing students shouted down a college speaker and forced that speaker to leave? Or prevented a left-wing speaker from speaking at all through disruptive tactics?

    Is it the Right behind calls for criminalizing "hate speech?"

    Everyone laughs at the trog conservatives when they ban some book in some local school board. But I've never been the subject of any speech restriction or something banned by the Right. Nor has almost anyone. However, everyone who's been enrolled in college since at least the 90's has been subject to the Left's speech police.

    Feel free to ignore these facts and others, however, like you almost always do.

  • craiginmass||

    "How about we don't put on a pretend anything, and just look at practically every college in America's "speech code." Do you think those were inspired and written by righties?"

    PC has run amok. I think most reasonable people can agree on that. But again, you are finding something seemingly wrong and saying "see?".

    The REAL question is what conservatives and those in the GOP would do if and when they were in the same position - that is, in control of Academia? I think we can find some ideas of this by looking at Liberty University and other bastions of the right...

    Or, more accurately, I think PC behavior is a misguided attempt to satisfy everything and all people are subject to it.

    That differs from handing out $100 bills outside the polling place or taking Koch money secretly to create books and films (propaganda) right before an election.

    It's the same old same old Libertarian methodology. Take any situations and take it to it's max (the old "smoke dope and stay up til 2am and debate the world').

    If one believes the gubment collects all taxes at the point of a gun, then - yes - one can also posit that lefties really want to round up all righties and put them in internment camps.

    But there is such thing as a middle ground - the old "don't cry FIRE in a crowd". Reasonable election regs are not a bad thing.

  • Kure'i||

    Yes, I'm finding something wrong and saying, "see?" So what? The article here is about something wrong; we are talking about something wrong, and if you object to examples being presented, then I'm not sure why you're discussing any of this.

    Your supposed "real" question offers a hypothetical and invites conjecture, with one example of a private university that is supposed to somehow invalidate the fact that it is a glaring statistical outlier in a system that is overwhelmingly controlled by the political Left. Why does anyone care what Liberty University's policies are, if his tax money is not funding it and he is free to agree whether to attend or not, anyway? It's a vastly different situation than taxpayer money going to a public university.

    You admit PC is out of control. Well, where does PC find its source? Hint: not anywhere on the right, insofar as I can tell. Pretty much the only time I hear conservatives complain about speech is in regard to the double standard applied between speakers belonging to a favored group (minorities, victims, liberals) and that applied to white and or non-liberals. And their complaint is generally true. I'm not a Christian, but anyone who's honest can clearly see that anyone can attack Christians or Christianity with impunity, whereas you'll get a media shitfest if you say anything about practically any other group (except "creepy ass cracker" white males.)

    (too long for one post, so continued.)

  • Kure'i||

    Not sure who was handing out $100 bills at the polls, but I wonder if you support free rides to the polls that your side of the aisle so frequently provides. Aren't those free taxi/bus rides worth something? And what's the difference between teh 3vil billionaire$ offering $100, and some politician offering the voter free rent if they get elected? Which is more enticing? If one candidate promises a free ObamaPhone, and the other spends money to make a propaganda movie, which is worse? You might as well just ban promises of Free Shit while you're busy at it.

    As far as "the same old libertarian methodology" stuff -- I have no idea what the hell you're talking about. But that's nothing new.

  • Walter Peck||

    " And what's the difference between teh 3vil billionaire$ offering $100, and some politician offering the voter free rent if they get elected? Which is more enticing? If one candidate promises a free ObamaPhone, and the other spends money to make a propaganda movie, which is worse? You might as well just ban promises of Free Shit while you're busy at it."

    Apparently it's perfectly fine to buy voters as long as it's an elected politician using tax payers' money to do it.

  • Brian||

    You know, you seem to be a lot more comfortable arguing with conservatives.

    I mean, here's a libertarian board discussing stupid shit the democrats in the senate, at the federal level, are proposing for free political speech, and you want to go around demanding that the libertarians instead answer for the conservatives in, where, Denver, who did something stupid once?

    I'm sure we can put together some handful of conservative assholes in some local district that are stupid. And, if you'd like, you can go find them and argue with them. Clearly, you have the spare time.

    In the mean time, however, national legislation that curbs the freedom of political speech is our topic. It's a more important topic then whether or not crazy conservatives in Denver, or wherever, are doing some stupid with sex ed or something.

    I mean, I know you'd be much more satisfied arguing with the conservatives in your head then the people actually here. But, we're not really going for it. And you can try to shame everyone into not joining in on your band wagon, but you just look like an idiot who's trying to distract everyone from what's going on at the national level with local issues, rather than really showing us where the issues are.

  • Tony||

    If you end up being just as pissy under an Republican federal government I will eat my fucking shoe.

  • JPyrate||

    I'll get the ketchup for you Tony.

  • FreeRadical||

    Tony, if a new Republican administration sucks ass as much as Bush's did, then I can guarantee we'll just as pissy.

    I myself am an equal opportunity president-hater. I hate them all. When they are inaugurated, they are always, by definition, the worst president in history. They could climb out of worst in history with a strenuous effort.

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    If you end up being just as pissy under an Republican federal government I will eat my fucking shoe.

    If you end up sucking the cock of power and the virtue of democracy as strongly under a Republican federal government I will eat my fucking shoe.

  • Tony||

    I don't suck the cock of power. You do. I simply acknowledge that it exists in forms other than government. Since you don't see that, you are sucking its cock and don't even know it. You are being drugged and mouth-raped by power. Shoes are the least of your worries.

    The next time Republicans win in a democratic way, I'll be fine with the outcome, if disappointed that the relevant electorate is majority stupid.

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    simply acknowledge that it exists in forms other than government. Since you don't see that, you are sucking its cock and don't even know it.

    How about not telling me what I believe?

    I don't suck the cock of power. You're cock power sucker. So there. Nanner nanner boo boo.

  • craiginmass||

    "I mean, I know you'd be much more satisfied arguing with the conservatives in your head then the people actually here.
    rather than really showing us where the issues are."

    The article is nothing more than an opinion on Citizens United - not really about "book banning" at all - more of a discussion about the specifics when close to elections....including disclosure.

    There are valid points on both sides of such an issue. To say the "free flow of information" is always beneficial would be to say that propaganda works - since this "free flow" is better distributed by those with more money and power and ideologies.

    the issues with this article are:

    1. First - the article is a PAID FOR (Kochs, etc.) attempt to smear the left - as are most articles here.

    2. Secondly, it's an attempt to equate "proper place, proper time" with something more suspect - book banning.

    3. The disclosure and human nature parts are, as usual, glossed over.

    Based on these summaries, giving voters $100 bills outside the polling station and asking them to snap a smartphone pic of their paper ballot and show it to you on the way out for a second $100 - would be free speech.

    Well, would it? Both cases (purposely made hit books and movies) and $100 bills are free speech - at least you know who is giving you the money!

    The lack of disclosure involved with this new money is perhaps the most troubling part. When propaganda is spread, we should have the right to know who is paying for it.

  • Brian||

    1. First - the article is a PAID FOR (Kochs, etc.) attempt to smear the left - as are most articles here.

    This is what we call "poisoning the well", which is a pretty ridiculous rhetorical device: everything here is wrong, because Koch donates to the Reason foundation. Whatever, dingbat.

    2. Secondly, it's an attempt to equate "proper place, proper time" with something more suspect - book banning.

    You're going to have toe explain that one, I don't get it.

    3. The disclosure and human nature parts are, as usual, glossed over.

    Again, is this some blanket, "they're talking about what they want to talk about, instead of what I, the mightly craiginmass, thinks they should talk about?" Yeah, everyone else needs to follow your lead, obviously. Because...you're so wise.

    Based on these summaries, giving voters $100 bills outside the polling station and asking them to snap a smartphone pic of their paper ballot and show it to you on the way out for a second $100 - would be free speech.

    Well, would it?

    Uh... I think using resources (i.e., money) to make a book or a movie or a commercial is free speech, but that doesn't imply that every use of resources is free speech. For example, hiring a hitman with money is a form of attempted murder, not speech.

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    The lack of disclosure involved with this new money is perhaps the most troubling part. When propaganda is spread, we should have the right to know who is paying for it.

    Right, because when the truth or falseness of any facts hinges, not on the ideas expressed, but who's paying for what, then of course the most important thing to figure out is who's paying for what.

    You know, for people who can't think and can only employ guilt by association, poisoning the well fallacies to try to make their way through life. Good luck not actually thinking.

  • Kure'i||

    "MOST Americans are against CU, so either the vast majority of Americans are clueless..."

    MOST Americans have no idea wtf CU is. Ask the first 10 people on the street if they know what it is, and I'd be surprised if even one of them has heard of it, and even more surprised if they can explain it beyond what they've heard from the "OMFGZ K0cH$ = d3\/iL$" Media Project.

    Of course, you became familiar with the Koch brothers and CU from non-corporate sources, right? Just some guy blogging somewhere on a site written, owned, and hosted by noncorporate entities.

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    OK, so, on the one hand, we have some crazy conservatives in some crazy local districts somewhere who want to ban books that teach evolution and sex ed.

    On the other hand, we have democrats in the senate trying to ban political books, like fascists.

    And your takeaway is that we we're getting all in a tizzy over the pointless latter, when we really need to focus with laser-like intensity on the former. And, why? Because that's the GOP, and Koch!

    You have absolutely no perspective, and no one should listen to you. And you keep unwittingly explaining that over and over again.

  • sasob||

    Don't forget the crazy libs in crazy local districts who've been wanting to ban books like Huckleberry Finn for at least a couple generations now because it uses the "N" word. Even way back the left would have liked to remove a novel titled T Model Tommy from school libraries because of its portrayal of organized labor. And, of course, banning Atlas Shrugged is the ultimate wet dream for some of them.

  • craiginmass||

    "On the other hand, we have democrats in the senate trying to ban political books, like fascists."

    Please point me to where someone wants to ban political books???

    You guys are making that up. From the article:
    "prohibit the distribution of a movie about Hillary Clinton in the 30 days before a federal primary election because it was, ostensibly, an “electioneering communication”"

    This is ONLY about influencing elections - why not use the right words? Oh, because all taxes are collected at the point of a gun, right? They will shoot you and your wife in the head like sick horses if you don't pay, right?

    You lose all cred when you exaggerate like this!

    Here are the "two sides" which comprise the real debate:

    1. Conservatives and GOP'ers have already rewritten history books and are attempting to do more. These books will be taught to tens or hundreds of millions of children though the decades on a regular basis.

    vs.

    2. Some people (probably most) feel that in the days before an election, the playing field should be fairly level - in the same way you might stop taking bets for an event when the time gets very near.

    #1 is being done as propaganda to millions - whereas #2 is a good faith attempt to stop unlimited lying or slanting of the issues for a few weeks.

    Banning books? Liberals are the new book banners?

    You have got to be kidding me. Again, you lose all cred when you turn a proposed temporary reg into "banning".

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    Please point me to where someone wants to ban political books??? You guys are making that up.

    Uh, Citizen's United banned political books:

    Justice Anthony Kennedy: "Well, suppose it were an advocacy organization that had a book. Your position is that under the Constitution . . . the book itself could be prohibited."
    Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm Stewart: "If the book contained the functional equivalent of express advocacy."—Exchange during oral arguments over Citizens United, 2009

    "A campaign document in the form of a book can be banned."— Campaign finance advocate Fred Wertheimer, of Democracy21
    This is ONLY about influencing elections - why not use the right words?

    Uh, when your attempts to prevent influencing elections involve banning books, then you're banning books. You may not like those words, but that's admitting a lot, and it's exactly what you're doing.

    2. Some people (probably most) feel that in the days before an election, the playing field should be fairly level - in the same way you might stop taking bets for an event when the time gets very near.

    It's funny how you're the one insisting on using the wrong words and couching what you want in blatant double-speak. Suddenly banning books equals "leveling the playing field"? Hell you can call anything "leveling the playing field". It doesn't mean you get a pass.

    Your blinded by team.

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    Are you so authoritarian that you truly don't see that many of the sick constructs in this country - from "family values".....to o the "war on drugs" t

    So you are saying that libertarians are so authoritarian that they don't see the sickness of the war on drugs?

    Did you happen to notice on some of your recent visits to a link to a movie they made called America's Longest War, which is specifically about the failed drug war and the damage it does to the USA?

    If you throw accusations around so carelessly when it comes to us, accusations that are so clearly off base that one must conclude that they are made out of spite or complete thoughtlessness, then how seriously are we supposed to take it when you go on your long rants about the GOP and the Koch brothers? Yeah, they could be evil, or you could just not know what the hell you're talking about.

    You certainly aren't aware that libertarians noticed the badness of the drug war.

  • Libertarius||

    This guy is mentally unstable. You'd have to be sick and deranged to seriously consider the concept of family values to be a "sick construct".

    You're a (actually) sick leftoid construct, craig.

  • craiginmass||

    "This guy is mentally unstable. You'd have to be sick and deranged to seriously consider the concept of family values to be a "sick construct"."

    Well, when "family values" becomes a euphemism for fundamentalist religion, manifest destiny, endless war, locking up a big % of the population, etc....it's slightly different!

    Please? Don't tell me you are fooled by those words ? If so, they won!

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    family values = fundamentalist religion, manifest destiny, endless war, and the war on drugs?

    Are you serious?

    Conservatives, who have their issues, are not the problem. They are at least rooted in the classical liberal philosophical tree. Progressivism is an unabashed totalitarian movement with no connection to the Enlightenment. Perfect man through perfect gov (replace society with gov in other words), admit no timeless axioms of governance (we'll do whatever we want because) and rule by technocrats (a small elite ruling class).

    The big difference is that with all of the issues Conservatives have; they know that things like natural rights, property rights, and generally being left the fuck alone are good things. Progs hate that shit. Progs represent a deviant strain of political thought. Progs are fucked up on basic principle, there is not hope that the average Prog will be anything other than craven.

  • craiginmass||

    Can you imagine if the folks of the Enlightenment - instead of learning and advancing - only looked back to some construct that was made up in their books?

    That's what conservatives do! We'd never have had the Enlightenment if folks didn't open their eyes and look around them and understand what was going on - and what the possibilities were.

    The Enlightenment:
    "Its purpose was to reform society using reason, to challenge ideas grounded in tradition and faith, and to advance knowledge through the scientific method."

    Hmm...let's see
    1. We KNOW Righties are more grounded in tradition and faith. That is fact you cannot dispute.
    2. We KNOW Righties are anti-science, from the creation museum to some guy above the clouds to not getting preggy unless you love the guy and want sex....to climate change, etc.

    In short. Your argument fails bad and is another example of backwards bizzarro world. There is a valid reason that only 6% of Scientists ID as Republican.

    Think about that figure deeply and get back to us.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    You are way over stating 2.

    The point was that regardless of their flaws Conservatives are rooted in the Enlightenment while Progs have tyranny baked in to the foundation of their political philosophy.

    Couple of myths you seem to propagate.

    1. Conservatives are anti-Science. Most engineers I know are either conservative or libertarian. I live in a city with one of if not the highest per capita concentration of PhD's in the country.

    2. CAGW is somehow an example of good science when in fact it's piss poor and generally shoddy work. 18th year of flat temps, btw. I would get fired if the sims and models I wrote were that bad.

  • craiginmass||

    "You certainly aren't aware that libertarians noticed the badness of the drug war."

    Oh, I am very aware...very much! What you SAY is not what matters, it's what you do...

    The Koch's have largely given up on being any kind of a third party and now unabashedly put ALL their resources towards the USA GOP.

    Let me repeat that. The Koch's, Scaifes, Heritage Foundation, Cato, Reason and friends want a Republican Majority....a permanent one.

    Not too many steps to this "Reason and Logic".

    1. Money Talks, BS Walks.
    2. Koch (and in general, libertarian) money and propaganda goes toward the GOP
    3. The GOP is/was the main driver of the Drug War, the Rewriting of Books, the whole "I am more religious than you" scene and the "I want you barefoot and preggy" movements.

    You are as you do. It's not an accident that "liberal" states like MA decrimed long ago...and that "conservative" states like GA. still throw the book at you.

    As to book banning - again, backwards world. It's as if you pretend you don't know about the Texas Schoolbook commission and their attempts at rewriting of history to fit the right wing mold.

    I'm very aware that not every conservative is the same on every issue. But with the Koch's throwing hundreds of millions and numerous "astroturf" non-profits into the mix, it's hard for you to argue they support anything other than the GOP....and when you appoint the GOP, you are closer to the American Talibs (religious fundamentalists) than having centrists or center-left.

  • Brian||

    What you SAY is not what matters, it's what you do...

    The Koch's have largely given up on being any kind of a third party and now unabashedly put ALL their resources towards the USA GOP....

    Blah blah blah. If you want to just me by whatI do, then judge me by what I do, not what the Koch's and the GOP do. Otherwise, you sound like a raging, tin-foil hat wearing blame thrower, who doesn't even understand he's talking to the wrong people about the wrong topics.

    Or, are you conceding that libertarianism is a perfectly great philosophy, it just needs to divorce itself from the Kochs to get your seal of approval?

    Or, if there's something inherently wrong with libertarianism, can you address that directly, instead of a constant pseudo-guilt-by-association argument tying libertarians to every horrible thing a republican ever does because the Koch's funded a republican once? If so, then outlining that would be much more effective than the Koch/GOP tinfoil hat shit, which has nothing to do with libertarianism directly, despite all your fantasies that Koch's "own" libertarianism, which is complete bull shit.

  • craiginmass||

    "instead of a constant pseudo-guilt-by-association argument tying libertarians to every horrible thing a republican ever does because the Koch's funded a republican once? "

    Uh, let's be realistic:
    http://tinyurl.com/p6lde56

    As the article states, just this ONE part of the large Kock network employes (pays off) 500 operatives and they group is gunning 100% for Republicans - unabashedly. Also, there is news today that Rand Paul is doing the same - stumping all over the country for 100% Republicans, whatever their "conservative" outlook is.

    You have to start with the truth and go from there. The entire Koch-paid idea of this site and others - that there may be a "3rd way" of Libertarianism, is total BS and nothing but a front for the same old, same old cons who have done much to ruin this country.

    Own Libertarianism? Well, it would seem that their vast tentacles in the Cato institute, here and elsewhere is pretty far down that line! Unless you all are the second comings of Christ and don't believe that hundreds of millions of dollars has any influence on what you think and say.

    If that were true - then why the heck would they all be spending it?

  • Brian||

    Christ and don't believe that hundreds of millions of dollars has any influence on what you think and say.

    Uh, Pepsi spends millions of dollars trying to get me to drink Pepsi.

    I don't drink Pepsi.

    Does that make me the second coming of Christ? Because they haven't influenced what I think or say about Pepsi?

    God, you're stupid.

  • Brian||

    Just more poisoning the well bullshit.

    craiginmass: "You can't even trust your own thoughts. Why? The Kochs have just spent so much money, you can't even think straight! Listen to me, and abandon your libertarian ways!"

    You sound like a religious fanatic.

  • craiginmass||

    "Does that make me the second coming of Christ? Because they haven't influenced what I think or say about Pepsi?"

    Again, black and white thinking. Just because YOU can claim to not drink pepsi, it is a FACT that the ads and spending for Pepsi sells more Pepsi.

    Put on your pretend hat for another minute. Don't answer this right away.....

    But let's pretend.....

    Bloombery, Gates and Buffet decide they have enough of the stone age crowd. They decide to pool their money - 20 billion each (60 BILLION) to spend to elect people who believe in civil society, the commons, education, the environment, etc.

    We yap about 1-3 billion being spent on a POTUS election. I think it's safe to say that 30-60 billion spent on one, in the right ways, could swing both houses and the POTUS.

    So that's the first pretend question. If these 3 folks got together and vowed to outspend the right 10 or 20 to 1, would you be as adamant supporting their right to do so - even in the month and days before the election?

    Keep in mind that the spending does not have to be honest. They can lie, mislead, scare, make up things, etc. just like the Kochs and everyone else does.....

    Are you arguing that this would be a GOOD THING for our country and for the power of the vote?

    I'd say it would not be. In fact, the only way I'd even entertain such a move would be if they vowed beforehand that they'd overturn CU with a Constitutional Amendment which they'd put the rest of their fortunes toward advertising!

  • Brian||

    So that's the first pretend question. If these 3 folks got together and vowed to outspend the right 10 or 20 to 1, would you be as adamant supporting their right to do so - even in the month and days before the election?

    It depends on what they're spending the money on. If they're buying books, and commercials, etc, then I don't really care.

    Listen, at the point that you can't have people making books and films and commercials before an election because you're afraid people are too stupid to digest information and vote appropriately, then your problem is with democracy itself, not the regulation of democracy.

    No matter how much money a corporation spends, they can't force everyone to see everything and control everyone. For example, yeah, pepsi spends millions to get people to buy pepsi, and I don't remember the last time I saw a pepsi ad. I don't watch TV commercials and I don't read every stupid billboard that goes across, and even if I did, I certainly wouldn't vote for someone just because a stupid commercial told me so.

    Again, if your democracy is so fragile that you can't handle voters voting stupidly because they see commercials, or read books, then your problem is with democracy. Perhaps people shouldn't be wielding so much power over their neighbors, if they're that stupid? Ever think of that? What a great argument for limited government.

  • craiginmass||

    "It depends on what they're spending the money on. If they're buying books, and commercials, etc, then I don't really care."

    How would YOU legislate and regulate what they should spend THEIR money on?

    When it comes to Democracy, I do have that particular problem...the one you allude to.

    We have a largely uneducated electorate - and I'm not talking about the folks you may think of first. Remember, 4 out of 5 couldn't find Iraq or Afghanistan on a map. Right now most can't name who controls the house and senate. That's a real problem....

    Only in la-la land would we say that billions of dollars don't influence people - even smart and well informed people.

    As a simple example - if you truly believe that all the high paid consultants, thinkers, writers, etc. at Cato, Reason, AFP and the other groups really believe in everything they write or lobby about, I'd say you are a fool.
    I've been through over 50 years on this planet and maybe 2-5% of the people I've met would not be. Even among those, many would be swayed by fear and most of the other tactics of the advertising you call so fruitless.

    So, yes, money in politics is a corruptive influence. I think that most would agree.

    The cons who ruled on CU said "limits don't PREVENT corruption"...a fine excuse. What they are really saying is that you can get someone to lie, cheat or steal for less- it's not proven that giving them more makes them do it more.

  • Brian||

    How would YOU legislate and regulate what they should spend THEIR money on?

    I wouldn't let them spend their money on any violence. For example, they can't hire goon squads and tell people that they're going to be murdered unless they start following themselves as supreme leaders. That's not free speech.

    So, yes, money in politics is a corruptive influence. I think that most would agree.

    Politics is a corruptive influence, you moron. You think you can anoint some small group of people to have a monopoly on using violence to get their way in society, but some campaign finance reform is going to make that all wonderful? It's not like we had some wonderfully informed electorate, and clean communications in election cycles, before Citizens United. Unless you think the Bush/Reagan/Clinton/Carter years were all just one continuum of democratic goodness. The only presidential election effected by Citizens United was Obama. Is that one giving you problems?

    If you think money is a bad influence, then join me in proposing strict limits on the wealth transfers and money spending politicians can spend promise to spend, that we all pay for in taxes, in order to get elected and hold onto power. After all, money is so corrupting, right? And they must want to spend it for some reason, right? So, it must be making them powerful. So, they must be stopped and regulated, right? Why don't you take it to the logical conclusion?

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    Again, black and white thinking. Just because YOU can claim to not drink pepsi, it is a FACT that the ads and spending for Pepsi sells more Pepsi.

    Yeah, and just because someone out their spends money doesn't mean I'm mind controlled, you fucking idiot. It's not like every libertarian thought is contradicted by your noticing that Koch once funded a libertarian, and you think he's an ass.

    I mean, does Soros "own" the democrats? I mean, he spends money, right? If he doesn't mind fuck control every democrat, then, why does he do it? I don't have the imagination to think of any alternative reality (for example, may people do retain some mental independence despite TV commercials), so let me don my tin foil hat and join you. Is that how this is supposed to work?

    OK, now let's both get out there and take back our democracy. I'm sure we'll get around to that any day now. The last thing we need is stupid voters voting with stupid commercials in their heads. Then, they can make the right decisions, and lead us into a future of awesomeness. I have no reservations about this plan. Forward!

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    As to book banning - again, backwards world. It's as if you pretend you don't know about the Texas Schoolbook commission and their attempts at rewriting of history to fit the right wing mold.

    Actually, I'm sorry, no, but what you see as backwards world is really not understanding what actual book banning is, when you see it.

    What this article is actually talking about, is book banning: people not being allowed to sell books by the federal government, because they're dicks who hate freedom, especially when it may effect their own power (i.e., their election).

    What you're talking about with the Texas Schoolboard is the texas school board deciding to use certain books, and not use certain books, in classrooms. Those books aren't banned: people can still read about sex ed and evolution in books in Texas. So, conservatives are being a little stupid here, but not outright fascists, banning books. And, if having a stupid government board screw up your kids textbooks really bothers you, then you're making a great case for libertarianism, although you definitely don't even know it.

    Sorry, but this is your own false equivalency argument: "Yeah, senate democrats are banning books, but hey, look over there! Some conservatives in some local district are doing... something... with books, too! See, you don't care, because of your hypocritical conservative agenda blah blah blah tin foil hat tin foil hat...."

    No, you're just a distraction.

  • craiginmass||

    "Some conservatives in some local district are doing... something... with books, too!"

    You learn something new each day, so you should read about the Texas Schoolbook commission which decides on the school books for 43 MILLION students - a number large enough so that many other states end up with the same books (publishers standardize them).

    Heck, they are writing our mutual hero - Thomas Jefferson - out of them and replacing him with a Fundamentalist...because of TJ's take on religion!

    You need to cast the log out of your and your side's eyes before you seek the speck in the left's vision.

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    You learn something new each day, so you should read about the Texas Schoolbook commission which decides on the school books for 43 MILLION students - a number large enough so that many other states end up with the same books (publishers standardize them).

    You are smart enough to understand that the commission doesn't ban books, right? That choosing school books does not equal banning books, right?

    You need to cast the log out of your and your side's eyes before you seek the speck in the left's vision.

    You need to quit being functionally retarded.

  • craiginmass||

    "You are smart enough to understand that the commission doesn't ban books, right? That choosing school books does not equal banning books, right?"

    Ah, so you are saying it would be OK for Franken and friends to watch the movies and read the books and then substitute books and chapters written by their friends?

    Well, if so, you win this debate!

  • Brian||

    Ah, so you are saying it would be OK for Franken and friends to watch the movies and read the books and then substitute books and chapters written by their friends?

    Oh, don't put stupid words in my mouth that I never said. That's the kind of ridiculous false equivalency you would want to make in an argument.

    No, I'm saying that Franken and friends want to ban books that advocate for candidates during an election, and the Texas school board doesn't want to ban any books.

    And, I do win on that point. Because that's absolutely correct, and you can pretend all day it isn't, if you want. You're just showing yourself incapable of seeing the truth if your favorite team comes out looking bad.

  • craiginmass||

    It is the equivalent. You are acting as if not letting a billionaire fund a lying hit piece 30 days before an election is in some way equiv. to shoving false history into the heads of 100's of millions of young people.

    It isn't. You can't really think that.

  • Brian||

    craiginmass:

    It is the equivalent. You are acting as if not letting a billionaire fund a lying hit piece 30 days before an election is in some way equiv. to shoving false history into the heads of 100's of millions of young people.

    It isn't. You can't really think that.

    So, it is equivalent, or it isn't? You started off saying it is the equivalent, and then told me that if I'm acting like they're the same, when they're not. I can't really think they're the same. So, at this point you're communicating in too retarded a manner for me to follow.

    Let me just say that they're not equivalent, for this reason: the democrats in the senate are trying to ban books, and the Texas school board wasn't. So, they're not equivalent. I agree (I think?)

    Your further analysis is just full of question begging assumptions. Certainly banning books and communication before an election is just making it fair. And, certainly a school board picking controversial books for a school district must be worse.

    Really? You think you can assume that? OK, so when a Koch-like evil person wants to run for president, and your tin-foil-hat tell-all book is banned before the election because "we can't let craiginmass have an unfair influence on the election", so you can't write your book, but Koch can pour all his personal finances into his election, who do you think comes out on top?

    And now, this Koch-like person perhaps has some influence on the school board and textbooks? Better?

  • Brian||

    Justice Anthony Kennedy: "Well, suppose it were an advocacy organization that had a book. Your position is that under the Constitution . . . the book itself could be prohibited."

    Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm Stewart: "If the book contained the functional equivalent of express advocacy."—Exchange during oral arguments over Citizens United, 2009

    "A campaign document in the form of a book can be banned."— Campaign finance advocate Fred Wertheimer, of Democracy21

    Every time someone thinks "money isn't speech" is a great take on Citizens United, they need to read that.

    And any article anywhere that uses the "money isn't speech" line that ignores the above, has an author full of BS.

  • Ollie||

    Maybe we should all admit that no matte what our political leanings, or where we fall on whatever spectrum, we claim to love freedom AND we all believe in things that others might believe infringed on their freedom. It's really not a contest.

  • craiginmass||

    "Maybe we should all admit that no matte what our political leanings, or where we fall on whatever spectrum, we claim to love freedom AND we all believe in things that others might believe infringed on their freedom. It's really not a contest.
    reply to this"

    Freedom? I enjoy civil society and I fully understand I give up certain freedoms to allow for others to survive and thrive.

    Unlike many others here, I don't sit around visualizing the Gubment taking my tax money at the point of a gun. Rather I take the good with the bad and the overall situation seems - compared with all of history - pretty dang good.

  • Walter Peck||

    "Freedom? I enjoy civil society and I fully understand I give up certain freedoms to allow for others to survive and thrive."

    Yet you wonder why the posters here aren't taking your "look at the ebil conservatives!" bait.

  • starman2112||

    Was the Federal Election Board trying to ban the advertisements or the film itself?
    Because advertising is already a highly regulated form of speech. It seems that you could ban political speech in advertisements without opening the floodgates for banning other publications.

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